Timecode Setup Guide

Deity TC-1 giving timecode to Sound Devices MixPre-3

What is Timecode?

Timecode in all of its forms does one very important thing: it synchronizes all of your cameras, recorders, and any other device that accepts timecode.

Think of it as a frame-accurate clock that all the connected devices have baked into their files. This “clock” gives you a reference point for audio-video syncing and meaningful note-taking.

If you’re hunting for a timecode tutorial on a specific device, check out our list at the bottom of this page!

Do I need Timecode?

If you are a working professional, then that’s a resounding yes.

Professional sets are all about organizing and streamlining every step of the process to make things easier for the teams after you.

The biggest example of this is making audio/video-syncing a one-click process, likely saving your post-production team hours.

Deity TC-SL1 on a sound cart
Deity TC-1 giving timecode to Canon C300

First Thing’s First

Does your device have a dedicated timecode function?

Don’t worry if it doesn’t, as long as you have a mic input the Deity TC-1 can get you synced with the rest of your set!

This just dictates if your device needs SMPTE Timecode or Linear timecode.

SMPTE Timecode

SMPTE (Society Of Motion Picture and Television Engineers) is timecode that is embedded into the metadata of your device’s file.

All professional editing software can recognize this metadata and make use of it.

This type of timecode is only compatible with pro-level devices like cinema cameras that have dedicated timecode functions.

SMPTE Timecode graphic
Linear Timecode graphic

Linear Timecode

Linear Timecode or “LTC” is SMPTE timecode that’s embedded in the audio part of your video file instead of the metadata.

It’s just as frame-accurate as dedicated SMPTE timecode, but it requires a few more steps in post to use.

Linear is designed for devices that don’t have a dedicated timecode function, such as mirrorless cameras.

Timecode Cables

Firstly, check with your device manufacturer to see which connection you will need. Some devices like the Sony FX3 and Canon R5C require proprietary cables.

Generally, SMPTE Timecode uses professional connectors like BNC, 5-Pin Lemo, and 9-Pin.

Linear Timecode often uses a 3.5mm connection.

There are exceptions to this rule so double-check your device’s manual.

Deity TC-1 giving timecode to Canon EOS R5C
Deity TC-1 available frame rates for timecode

Frame Rates

Regardless of what type of timecode you’re using, the TC-1 is compatible with all standard frame rates, even drop frame.

  • 23.98
  • 24
  • 25
  • 29.97
  • 29.97 DF
  • 30
  • 30 DF

If you need to use high frame rates such as 60fps, check out this tutorial here.

Check The Manual

Be sure to check your camera’s manual to see if the FPS listed is its true FPS. Not all cameras correctly label the FPS they capture.

Here is an example of DJI’s true FPS.

DJI FPS conversion chart

We’ve Got A Tutorial For Everything

Okay, maybe not everything, but most things! Let us know if you have a special request!

Blackmagic URSA 12KDeity C15SMPTE
Blackmagic Pocket 6K ProDeity C12SMPTE
Blackmagic Pocket 6KDeity C12SMPTE
Blackmagic Pocket 4KDeity C12SMPTE
Canon C300 Mk 3Deity C15SMPTE
Canon C300 Mk 2Deity C15SMPTE
Canon C500Deity C15SMPTE
Canon C70Deity C15SMPTE
Canon EOS R5CDeity C19SMPTE
Canon EOS RDeity C12LINEAR
DJI Osmo Action 3Deity C12SMPTE
DJI Osmo Pocket 3Deity C21SMPTE
GoPro Hero 11Deity C12SMPTE
GoPro Hero 10Deity C12SMPTE
Sound Devices MixPre-10Deity C15SMPTE
Sound Devices MixPre-3Deity C12SMPTE
Panasonic S5 IIXDeity C12LINEAR
Panasonic S5 IIDeity C12LINEAR
Panasonic S5Deity C12LINEAR
Sony FX9Deity C15SMPTE
Sony FX3Deity C23SMPTE
Sony FX30Deity C23SMPTE

Syncing Timecode In Post

We’ve got your editor covered!

Adobe PremiereYesNo
DaVinci ResolveYesYes
Final Cut (Coming Soon)YesNo